Yes….Tell ah friend, de ting finally up…FINALLY!!!!!!
On July 8th, thousands of people flocked to New York’s Nassau County to partake in Foreign Bass Entertainment’s inaugural Caribbean Beach Fest at the famed Nikon at Jones Beach Theater.
With less than three months, the first time concert promoter was able to execute an event of mammoth proportions, totally dedicated to Caribbean music, culture and the observance of the 50th anniversaries of Independence for both Jamaica and Trinidad and Tobago.
This year’s Caribbean Beach Fest featured many artistes including, I-Octane, Cham, Farmer Nappy, Walker Hornug, Patrice Roberts, Kerwin DuBois and headliner, Machel Montano and the HD Family, under the theme, “Machel On the Beach.”
With the tropical-esque backdrop of the Atlantic Ocean and the magnificent amphitheater as the central locale, concert-goers were greeted with the pulsating sounds of Soca and Reggae music, for the first time, at the multimillion theater.
Local artistes such as Phoenix (daughter of legendary calypsonian, Mighty Sparrow), Ahtik Studio, Jason Benn, Jamesy P and Devyn & D’s Girls graced the pre-stage delivering their popular hits. There was also a costume presentation by Foreign Bass’ Miami carnival band, Fusion Karnival.
Spreading the reggae vibes was fiery Jamaican artiste, I-Octane. The Billboard chart-topping singer performed his biggest hits such as “L.O.V.E.,” and “Once More” plus selections off his Crying to the Nation album to the rave approval of the crowd.Baby Cham and O performing at Caribbean Beach Fest.
Feeding off the hype of I-Octane’s performance, dancehall superstar, Cham, energized the crowd with his classic hits such as “Vitamin S,” “Ghetto Story.” But it was his introduction of wifey O and their duets of “Wine” and “Tun Up” that sent the already charged crowd into a frenzy!
Fresh from the islands, Machel Montano arrived on stage to an uproar from the audience. There was no free room close to the stage, as people gravitated to the soca pied piper! Montano, dressed in a white armless denim jacket and matching pants with a black tee, ignited under the bright stage lights.
As soon as he did his intro performance, Machel was already checking his time, voicing his annoyance (in pure Diva mode) that he was the last to perform and without much time. Despite his vocal time check, the triple Soca crown king was able to look past his grievances to give the crowd what they came for… a phenomenal show.
Backed by his HD dancers, double M went into his full routine of his hits new and old, pulling out classics like “Torro Torro,” “Big Truck,” “Footsteps” and newbies, “A.O.A.” “Vibes Cyah Done,” “Mr. Fete” and of course, “Bottle Ah Rum.”
The man of the hour brought out his celeb friends as well to help celebrate his 30 years in the music business.
Walker and Machel performed their monster hit “Without You”, while Farmer Nappy sang his 2012 selections “You Make Me” and “Surrender.” Patrice Roberts gave a very brief performance that included the 2012 smash hit “I am Soca” with Kerwin DuBois supporting her vocally for the first time, together, on a US stage. Kerwin couldn’t leave without singing crowd favorite, “Bacchanalist.”LI native, Walker, schooling the crowd on his friendship with Machel. Patrice Roberts and Machel pumping the crowd Kerwin DuBois getting audience participation for “Bacchanalist” Machel and young Devyn
Due to the time constraints, Foreign Bass coughed up the extra dough for overtime, which allowed Machel the opportunity to call up 10 year old Devyn to join him on stage. What a magnificent moment to see the newest child prodigy meeting the one that has grown up to be a superstar. Lil Devyn’s stage presence is phenomenal and she proved she could hang and sing with the big boys!
At the closing of the show, celebrity cake maker, Cake Man Raven, surprised Machel on stage with a personalized signature red velvet cake in honor of his 30 year celebration.Cake Man Raven presenting Machel with his cake in celebration of 30 years in the music biz.
Machel would later say that gracing the Nikon stage and heralding soca music at Jones Beach for the first time was one of his most memorable performances! He was so moved by the adrenaline pumping crowd and hospitality of the promoter and sponsors, that he has even offered to perform again next year!
Official sponsors of Caribbean Beach Fest were Foreign Bass, One Coconut Water , Caribbean Airlines, with luxury transportation service provided by Couture Limo NYC and superb catering for VIP and artistes by Super Wings. Official media sponsor for the event, Jay Blessed Media.
Though the theater normally holds a maximum of 14,000 people, the nearly 5,000 in attendance was an absolute great turnout for this independent promoter. Logistically, there were a lot Foreign Bass could have done better, eg: better ticket retrieval at the gate, smoother VIP access for online buyers bought separate from ticketmaster, prevention of general admission from accessing VIP area with already used tickets, better treatment for the press and local artiste (some of whom weren’t allowed to perform), and a few others. However, this would surely be a learning experience for Foreign Bass as they take stock and prepare for the next.
Check out some of the performances below:
Machel and Devyn
For a first time, I cannot deny the fact that Foreign Bass did a great job with their first annual Caribbean Beach Fest.
So with a whole year of planning ahead, we look forward to seeing what’s in the pipeline for Caribbean Beach Fest 2013!
In the words of one concert attendee, “I can’t wait for next year…dis concert was sell off!!!!”
Oh….and even Machel can’t help but be a fan and endorse JayBlessed.com….